Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI) Certifications Issued

By Atlas LS

The Certification Commission For Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI) has just announced that they have certified the first wave of interpreters!  Congratulations to those who took and past the examination.  Atlas Language Services, Inc. is a proud supporter for CCHI and we feel strongly that this is a step in the right direction.    Although certification is not mandated at this time, it is important to regulate our industry to ensure that qualified interpreters are being utilized and that quality language professionals are being used.  As a LSP, the early stages of using these certified interpreters is difficult since supply is limited, but over time, we are confident that this certification, or one similar will become standard.  Interpreters are the first line of communication that an injured or ill individual receive, and it is crucial for our interpreters to have a solid foundation regarding techniques, terminology, etiquette and know and follow the medical Code of Ethics.

As a company with its roots in California and very familiar with the California Certification process and requirements, it is nice to see a start to a nationwide certification and standard for medical interpreters.

For those unaware, the CCHI has two certifications which are:

Certified Healthcare Interpreter (CHI) – A CHI has been tested on the most critical knowledge, skills and abilities required of a healthcare interpreter. A CHI must first complete the AHI examination plus an oral performance examination testing the CHI’s interpreting skills and abilities in consecutive and simultaneous interpreting, sight translation and translation. The CHI credential is currently only available for Spanish interpreters.

Associate Healthcare Interpreter (AHI) – An AHI has been tested on only a part of the knowledge, skills and abilities that are required of a healthcare interpreter. Since the AHI examination covers only part of the knowledge, skills and abilities required of healthcare interpreters and does not test an individual’s actual interpreting skills and abilities, a certification is not awarded to those who pass this test. Rather, the AHI credential (a certificate indicating that the individual has passed the first step in becoming a CHI and has shown that he/she has the knowledge required of a certified health care interpreter) is available for all interpreters who interpret in a language other than Spanish. An AHI has been tested on the most critical knowledge related to managing an interpreting encounter; healthcare terminology; interacting with other healthcare professionals; preparing for an interpreting encounter; and cultural responsiveness required of a healthcare interpreter but is not tested on the skills and abilities of interpreting . CCHI offers an oral performance exam only in Spanish at this time. AHI is a credential but it is not equivalent to certification.

As of Tuesday, January 25, 2011 CCHI has published that 235 certifications have been awarded.  130 CHI and 105 AHI.  Congratulations once again to those interpreters who took and pasted the pilot test.

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Atlas Language Services, Inc., a Chicago based Language Service Provider specializing in language interpretation (spoken), translation (written), globalization, localization and conference interpretation and simultaneous conference equipment rentals and sales.

With over 20 years of industry experience in the legal, medical, corporate, pharmaceutical, engineering and conference interpretation fields as well as expertise in written translations for advertising, marketing, promotions, sales, human resources, publications and technical research material, you can be assured that Atlas can handle all your language needs, not just domestically but worldwide.

Atlas Language Services, Inc. is an A+ rated business by the Better Business Bureau as well as a corporate member of:  American Translators Association; Association of Language Companies; Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce; Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce; Midwest Association of Translators & Interpreters; Meeting Planners International; and the Illinois Paralegal Association.

Atlas Language Services, Inc. can be reached at 888-816-0577 / 312-372-1600 / 815-479-1600 or online at http://www.AtlasLS.com.

Kevin McQuire is the President/CEO.